A Duke by Defaultby Alyssa Cole
Series: Reluctant Royals #2
Published on July 31, 2018
Format: eBook Source: Owned
Award-winning author Alyssa Coleâ€™s Reluctant Royals series continues with a woman on a quest to be the heroine of her own story and the duke in shining armor she rescues along the wayâ€¦
New York City socialite and perpetual hot mess Portia Hobbs is tired of disappointing her family, friends, andâ€”most importantlyâ€”herself. An apprenticeship with a struggling swordmaker in Scotland is a chance to use her expertise and discover what sheâ€™s capable of. Turns out she excels at aggravating her gruff silver fox bossâ€¦when sheâ€™s not having inappropriate fantasies about his sexy Scottish burr.
Tavish McKenzie doesnâ€™t need a rich, spoiled American telling him how to run his armoryâ€¦even if she is infuriatingly good at it. Tav tries to rebuff his apprenticeâ€”and his attraction to herâ€”but when Portia accidentally discovers that heâ€™s the secret son of a duke, rough-around-the-edges Tav becomes her newest makeover project.
Forging metal into weapons and armor is one thing, but when desire burns out of control and the media spotlight gets too hot to bear, can a commoner turned duke and his posh apprentice find lasting love?
Alyssa Cole is an autobuy author for me for both her contemporary and historical romances.Â This is book 2 of her contemporary Reluctant Royals series.
Do you have to read the first book to read this one?
Not really as long as you can just accept that her best friend is a Princess. (But you should read the first book because it was wonderful.)
Portia has always felt like she is a failure.Â She comes from a highly successful family.Â Her twin overcame a life threatening illness and now runs a very successful website.Â Her family is pushing her take a job with the family company just so she does something stable.Â Â Instead she took an internship with a Scottish sword maker, because that’s a practical life skill.
Her skills are a big help to the company though.Â She increases their social media profiles so they get more business.Â She redoes their website.Â It is in doing research for the website that she finds out about her boss’s relationship to a former Duke.
I liked that the conflict keeping them apart in the story was a logical one.Â He’s her boss and it is inappropriate and wrong to hit on interns.Â People should remember that.
This was a fun read that I finished in a few sittings.Â I’m looking forward to the rest of the series.
Emily Larkin’s Baleful Godmother books are also autobuys for me.Â This is the first book in a new series but it is set in the same world as her previous books.
Do you have to read the other books to read this one?
The premise of these books is that a long time ago a woman helped a fairy.Â In exchange all her female descendants are granted their choice of a magical power at some point in their mid-twenties.Â Each book can be read as a standalone.
Primrose’s power is teleportation.Â That’s a good choice.Â That’s the power I would choose.Â I like that she is first seen using it to go get a book she forgot at her house.Â However, her magic doesn’t really affect the story a lot.Â The same story could be told without it.
Oliver was an Army officer who came home after he inherited a title.Â He was far out of the line of succession but several relatives have died unexpectedly in the last year.Â Now someone seems to be trying to kill Oliver too.Â The mystery of who it is the main story of the book.Â It is quickly narrowed down to two suspects but the story twists and turns to keep you guessing.Â Â
All the action takes place at a house party where Oliver is the fresh meat being dangled in front of several marriageable ladies and their mothers.Â He is trying to stay out of their clutches but the marriage hunt is deadly serious.Â Â
Primrose and her brother are Oliver’s childhood friends who are trying to keep him safe.Â Their relationship develops because Primrose is the only woman who likes him for himself instead of his title.